English Premier League side, Arsenal, are reportedly one of three clubs keeping an eye on Nigerian winger, Samuel Chukwueze, six years after they almost signed him when they brought fellow Nigerian Kelechi Nwakali to the club instead.
In January 2016, it was widely reported that Arsenal had convinced both Chukwueze and Nwakali to reject offers from Manchester United and Bayern Munich and come to London.
Nwakali arrived at Arsenal first and Chukwueze was expected to join him not long after.
Wages had been agreed, his medical had been passed, but as the months rolled on, there was still no sign of him at the Emirates despite his Nigeria youth international teammate being snapped up.
It was reported then that his club, Diamond Academy, tried to get more money for the teenager and, as a result, were stalling on Arsenal, much to the Gunners’ annoyance. The deal then collapsed, despite the player wanting to sign for the EPL club.
In the end, Arsenal paid €3.5m for Nwakali (who is now valued at €700k) while Chukwueze went to Villarreal for €500k.
He is now worth around €20m and according to reports in England, Arsenal are interested again in the 23-year-old.
Chukwueze has three goals and four assists in 20 appearances this season.
His current contract in Spain runs until 2024 and the Yellow Submarines want a fee in the region of €40m for him.
Meanwhile, football analyst Pete O’Rourke has tipped Chukwueze as a perfect addition to Premier League side Aston Villa’s attack should the Premier League club make a move for the Villarreal star.
The 23-year-old has long been on the radar of Premier League clubs since he broke into the Villareal senior side in 2018/19.
“When you get a new manager at a club they always look to sign players that they have worked with before and know. Chukwueze would be one of those that Emery trusts for Villa,” O’Rourke was quoted as saying by Football FanCast.
“He is looking to improve Aston Villa’s attacking output and Chukwueze would definitely add to them. He’s a tricky winger who can score goals and provide goals. He’s someone who would add some pace to the Villa attack as well.”
Recent reports have claimed that Villa’s Spanish boss Unai Emery is keen on a reunion with the Nigerian, who shined under him at El Madrigal
During Emery’s time with the Yellow Submarine, Chukwueze made 94 appearances, contributing an impressive 14 goals and 15 assists, so it is no surprise that the former Arsenal boss wants to bring him to the Premier League.
Villa have won two Premier League games under Emery and the 51-year-old Spaniard would be looking to strengthen his squad in January as he looks to add the Nigeria international to his team.